So long to the sand pit

  As I write this I sit on a big green cooler in a huge empty room that echoes like an cave. The walls are bare, the scenic paintings of Trinidad have been taken down, carefully bubble wrapped and boxed up for shipping, and last night a friendly family from Ireland came and disassembled our…

Testosterone Hell

  The other day I had A Bad Experience. The weather is cooling down a bit, so I decided it was time to start exploring Dubai on foot, since the last few months, with temperatures hitting 45’C on an almost daily basis, going outside for more than 10 minutes at a time was impossible. I…

So, the story with the goats…

There are only three things in Khasab — diving, goats, and smuggling. A tiny town about a three-hour drive north of Dubai, Khasab is the capital of the beautiful Musandam Peninsula, the most northern tip of our neighbour to the east, Oman. However, it is only accessible by land from the UAE, kind of like…

Money Matters

Before I came here, I heard and read stories about people getting into financial trouble in Dubai and bailing out, leaving behind everything, including pets, furniture, and cars. They simply pack up a few suitcases, and in the dead of the night head to the airport and leave, for good. Because if you have a…

How Not To Dress (in Dubai)

  I won’t lie to you — I was nervous, nay, reluctant, about moving to the Middle East. It just didn’t sound like a good place for a belligerent West Indian feminist. I had heard all these horror stories and urban legends about ‘poor innocent foreigners’ getting locked up by the morality police for inappropriate…

Taxicab Confessions

  “Ramadan start tomorrow, ma’am,” the smiling Pakistani taxi driver said to me, as I dropped gratefully into the backseat of his air conditioned taxi. As I slipped on the seatbelt, I thought about how to respond to his comment. Truth be told, I wasn’t quite sure why he was telling me this. Maybe just…

Home Sweet Home

A lot have friends have asked me to “put up some pictures of your apartment nuh!” So today I give you all the grand tour. I really like our apartment; it’s big and clean and quiet, we have a big balcony which, when it cools down, will be a great BBQ location, and we don’t…

Before the glitz and the gleam….

At first glance, it is hard to see beyond the high-rise, opulent, glamourous side of Dubai, outside of the malls and the incredible towers and the golf courses and air conditioned bus stops. But today I found a real taste of the historical Bedouin lifestyle that existed before the UAE hit black gold and transformed…

Japanese products in Dubai

In Dubai there are lots of Japanese restaurants everywhere, ranging from fancy shwancy places like Nobu to really cheap (and in my opinion, disgusting) chains like Yo!Sushi. All the big supermarkets have sushi sections too, for hungry people who need a quick bite of nigiri. With sushi such a popular food, I thought it might…

High in the sky

It is no secret that in Dubai there is a real strong ambition to make everything the biggest, the tallest, the brightest and the best. And why not? If you’re going to build a city out of nothing, and you have all the oil money in the world, why not aim for the stars? This…

Ultimate tease

One of the things that Westerners have to adjust to when moving to an Arab nation are the rules regarding alcohol. As Muslims are not supposed to drink alcohol, you cannot buy booze in the general supermarkets or convenience stores. However, they do have a massive fake beer section in almost every supermarket. Looks like…

Dubai’s new metro

To me, public transport represents freedom. In Trinidad I sadly never took any kind of public transport because, well, there simply weren’t many options, the majority of taxis are unlicensed, and everyone owned a car. This is why I truly enjoyed the freedom of life in Tokyo and Hong Kong, where the trains can get…

Desert icons

Truth be told, I have not been a very good tourist since arriving in Dubai. But let’s be honest – only mad people and labourers actually walk anywhere in this place, or go sightseeing in this heat. It’s 35’C by 10 am, and much hotter by mid-afternoon, so people hide inside. Since we currently do…

Arrival Day

I am very pleased to report that we have officially survived our first week in our new home, Dubai. After spending five weeks in beautiful Toulouse, drinking beer in the park and watching people practice the tango, arriving in the starkness of the desert is a definite shock to the system. I have to admit,…